Module Identifier EA11610  
Academic Year 2001/2002  
Co-ordinator Dr Bill Perkins  
Semester Semester 2 (Taught over 2 semesters)  
Other staff Professor Alex Maltman, Dr Charles Bendall, Dr Nicholas Pearce  
Course delivery Lecture   20 Hours 1 HOUR LECTURES  
  Laboratory   20 Hours 10 X 2 HOURS  
Assessment Continuous assessment   Practical notebook.   20%  
  In-course assessment   2 in-course short practical tests.   30%  
  Exam   1.5 Hours Written exam.   50%  
  Resit assessment   2 hour practically-based examination   100%  

Brief description

The emphasis throughout is on the practice of working with rocks and minerals. In the early lectures minerals will be defined and their classification explained. The accompanying practical classes will introduce how the main varieties of minerals are identified and provide practice in mineral recognition.

Igneous rocks will be considered as physical and chemical systems. The classification of igneous rocks will be introduced and their mode of occurrence described. The practical identification and description of the more common igneous rock types will be emphasised in this section of the course. The factors which control the evolution of igneous rocks will be described.

Sedimentary rocks will be described. The formation of sedimentary rocks: erosion, transport, deposition and diagenesis. Siliciclastic sedimentary rocks; carbonates - main rock types will be studied in practical classes. Common fossils. Evaporites, coal and ironstones.

Metamorphic rocks are outlined in the lectures and the accompaying practical classes provide an introduction to recognising the most important varieties.

Aims of the module

This module aims to provide a training in the systematic description of minerals and rocks which leads to their description and identification. The module aims to explain the origin of igneous, metamorphic and sedimentary rocks as well as explaining the links between them.


The student will gain familiarity with the more common minerals and rocks, learn the principles of classification and methods of identification, and will be able to identify them both in hand-specimen and under the microscope. The student will gain practice in the systematic description of rocks and minerals and appreciate the importance of practical work in geology. To develop the basic recording skills required for mineral and rock description and identification. A laboratory notebook will be used throughout the practical course and collected as part of the assessment.

A basic training will be provided in the application of the petrological microscope in geology.

Learning outcomes

On completion of this module the student should demonstrate :-

Reading Lists

** Recommended Text
Duff, D. Holmes' Principles of Physical Geology.. Chapman & Hall.
Earth. W.H. Freeman and Co